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Copyright guide for Camosun College: Open Resources

Further Information

The library maintains a guide that outlines sources for open education resources, open access journals and books, and sources of open culture (images, video etc.).

Open Resources Guide

About open access

Open Access (OA) refers to scholarly literature that is freely available on the Internet.

These resources are sustained by the academic and scientific communities that produce them.

They are typically found in peer-reviewed Open Access Journals and Institutional Repositories, which act as archives of institutions' scholarly output.

Who benefits from open access


  • Increases the visibility, readership and impact of author’s works
  • Creates new avenues for discovery in a digital environment
  • Enhances interdisciplinary research

Educational Institutions

  • Contributes to the core mission of advancing knowledge
  • Ensures all students have access to research, rather what they (or their school) can afford
  • Contributes to a better-educated workforce


  • Access to cutting-edge research encourages innovation
  • Stimulates new ideas, new services, new products


  • Provides access to previously unavailable materials relating to health, energy, environment, and other areas of broad interest
  • Creates better educated populace

* Content on this page has been copied and adapted from Why Open Access? (SPARC)

Legitimate Open Access

The legality of open access material is determined by the copyright holder. Some of the way holders can choose to disclose their material include a Creative Commons license, copyright free or Conditional Open Access. Unless the owner has set up the material as Open Access, it remains as copyrighted material in any circumstance until it comes to the public domain. 

Various Academic services claim themselves as Open Access and their resources are legal. However, many of these services allow their users to upload materials and share. During this process, there is no permission or consent involved from its copyright holders. As a result of this, these sites are essentially File-sharing for books and articles, and are likely to be breaking copyright. 

Camosun College supports legitimate Open Access, but we do not support file-sharing sites which can break copyright.